In an exclusive interview the controls manufacturer shares its insights on the natural refrigerant market and its technology developments for this year.
Diego Malimpensa, CAREL Group, at ATMOsphere Europe 2017 in Berlin, Germany
Photo Credit: Anna Salhofer
“In 2018, we will continue to promote several solutions for natural refrigerants increasing our actual portfolio and developing new ones, based mostly on modulating DC inverter technology, electronic expansion valves and efficient controllers to ensure high performances for all climates and application formats,” Diego Malimpensa, who manages the retail solutions business unit at the CAREL Group, told this website.
In 2017 the Italy-based company developed controls for DC inverter driven compressors, using R290 and CO2, and will further build on this portfolio in 2018. “This technology, quite new for the refrigeration market, combined with our electronic controls, drives and valves portfolio, can bring enormous advantages in terms of efficiency, regulation stability, size and weight compared to other traditional technologies,” Malimpensa explained.
For the HECU, a condensing unit solution designed for small convenience stores and cold room applications, they “expect wider use of this solution in various formats, such as low and medium temperature applications, single and booster configuration, especially in Europe but also in America, Australia and South Africa,” he said.
As for the HEEZ, an optimisation solution for propane beverage coolers, “during 2018 we will extend the use of this solution to other similar applications,” he said.
The HEOS SISTEMA, (a "water-loop concept"), pRACK solution (for managing CO2 booster systems, DC boosters, parallel compressors, etc.) and EmJ modulating ejectors will also push into new markets in 2018.
Malimpensa predicts that propane will gain market share. “The use of propane is gaining attention in small cabinets, such as beverage coolers. 2018 will be a key year for propane, and its use may also be extended to bigger applications if the modification of IEC 60335-2-89 [an international standard that keeps charge limits for many units at 150g] is finally approved to allow the use of 500 grams in commercial appliances,” he noted.
“2018 will be a key year for propane, and its use may also be extended to bigger applications if the modification of IEC 60335-2-89 [an international standard that keeps charge limits for many units at 150g] is finally approved to allow the use of 500 grams in commercial appliances.”
– Diego Malimpensa, CAREL Group
CAREL is confident it has “CO2 transcritical solutions in all continents, and the natural refrigerants (CO2 and propane) are nowadays a worldwide trend” no longer focused only in Europe.
The EU’s new F-Gas Regulation will further push the trend toward natural refrigerants. “The consequences that have already been noticed during the last year, with a drastic increase of prices and reduction of availability of HFC refrigerants, will have a great impact on the market in 2018,” he argued.
“Finally, we should mention the compatibility of our refrigerant-related products such as electronic expansion valves, leakage/temperature/pressure sensors, controllers, with all natural refrigerants including ammonia,” Malimpensa said.